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Tax review for flexible workers needed, says PRISM

Trade association PRISM has welcomed a recommendation by the Government’s own advisory body that a review of the tax regime for flexible workers be carried out.

Crawford Temple, CEO of the contractor sector trade body, described the call by the Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) as an “important intervention at a crucial time”.

He said such a review should go even further by assessing all legislation affecting contractors, the self-employed and those building the ‘sharing’ and ‘gig’ economy.

The OTS made the recommendation in its response to the Government’s ‘Off-Payroll Working’ consultation.

It was published after PRISM announced it had asked the independent think tank, the Social Market Foundation, to launch a wide-ranging review of employment status and legislation, paying particular regard to the flexible workforce.

The Confederation of Business Industry (CBI) has also called for a strategic review in its response to the same consultation.

Temple said, “The OTS’s remit is limited to taxation, so that’s why they have focused on tax in their call for a review. The weight of support for a strategic review that looks at everything including employment status, benefits and employment rights is growing all the time and it’s fantastic that an organisation like the CBI recognises the need for one.  

“The OTS’s response is an important intervention at a crucial time because they are the Government’s own advisory body on these issues.

“These new calls for a review follow PRISM’s open letter to the Chancellor calling for a review that gained cross party support from 55 MPs.”

The OTS said in its response: “We think there is a need to keep this whole area of how the flexible workforce engages with the tax system under review.

“We think this is particularly necessary with the rise of the gig/sharing economy. We think that a review focusing specifically on the taxation of the flexible workforce should be considered.”

Picture courtesy of Pixabay

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